NEW @ SEPHORA: Holiday 2018 - Yes! or Yawn!

by - September 28, 2018

Hey guys! It's that time of year again - when makeup brands start releasing their holiday collections WAY too freakin' early. Once upon a time, I would get incredibly excited and have my eye on pretty much all of the holiday collections, but as the years go by I'm finding myself a lot more conservative about what really gets me excited. It also, honestly, really doesn't help that holiday collections start coming out in August now. Anyone else actually find more annoying than exciting? Anyway, I was perusing the Sephora website to check out what was new as we get bombarded with holiday collections and I wanted to put together a little list of some of the ones that stuck out for me - both because they excite me and because they bore me to tears! Be warned, there's a lot of stuff that I do not like in this post...

Keep reading for more!

Too Faced Gingerbread Spice Eyeshadow Palette - $59CAD - YES!
Let's just get this one out of the way right away, since it actually does stand in a category all its own for me. And that category is... The Only Palette That I Really, Really Want To Spend My Money On So Far. I love the Too Faced shadows in my collection, particularly the ones in this type of tin packaging, and I absolutely love the curation of this palette. It manages to be really on trend while still standing apart from a lot of what's coming out. I love the mix of matte and shimmer shades and I really feel like there are a lot of shades in this palette that both stand apart from what I already have in rotation and would get a lot of wear. I love this and I may or may not have already ordered it by the time you're reading this!

Now let's talk about some palettes that I absolutely will not be ordering....

Urban Decay NAKED Cherry Palette - $66 - YAWN!
I feel like someone must have been excited about this release... but honestly, I don't actually know anyone who has at this point. I feel like this palette probably would have excited me if it had come out a year or two ago, but now it's just been done. It's not exciting! I'm also just personally not a huge fan of Urban Decay's eyeshadow formula, so between that and this curation, I'm just not interested. 

Becca Volcano Goddess Eyeshadow Palette - $55 - YAWN!
Talk about a letdown. Considering how absolutely stunning the packaging on this palette was, I think we were all kind of expecting it to be a mind blower... and then we ended up with this boring palette. Again, there was a time when I think I probably would have been excited by this palette, but that time has definitely passed and now I just think this is a snooze. 

Kat Von D Fetish Eyeshadow Palette - $76 - YAWN!
Just so you know, I'm not purchasing Kat Von D products anymore and they won't be featured on the blog, but even if I was, this palette wouldn't interest me at all. It's boring. It feels like it would have been exciting 5-7 years ago, and can I just say that I'm really sick of palettes that I can't easily store? It's great and all to have an interesting packaging design, but a bigass oval palette full of boring shades for over $75 is just never, ever going to do it for me. Kat Von D made it real easy to stick to my convictions on this one. 

Every year it seems like Too Faced and Tarte have sets with large palettes and small mascaras, and this year is no exception....

Too Faced Dream Queen Makeup Collection - $72 - YAWN!
Of these three sets, this is probably the one I'd be mostly likely to buy if I was going to buy any of them. The curation of the palette isn't awful and there's definitely some shades in there that I like. I actually like that they stepped outside of the norm a little bit and included some minis that aren't the Better Than Sex Mascara alongside the Better Than Sex Mascara. I just know that this is a palette that, even if it was amazing quality, would get used a few times and then tucked in the drawer. 

Tarte Pineapple Of My Eye Collector's Set - $77 - YUCK!
I honestly can't even communicate how much I hate this set, and it's not even anything to do with the shades in the palette. The shades in the palette actually look pretty solid from what I can tell, particularly the face shades. That being said, there is no way I am EVER going to buy a palette that's shaped like a pineapple. Never. I hate the way that it forces the palette to be laid out, I hate how awkward it is, and I hate to think about trying to store it in my makeup collection because I know that it would infuriate me every time I saw it. NO. NO PINEAPPLE PALETTES. 

Too Faced Under The Christmas Tree Breakaway Face & Eye Set - $52 - YAWN!
When this is shaped like a tree, it's really pretty. I'd love to have a pretty decoration for my house that was shaped like this. But once you pull it apart... it might be the most boring this Too Faced has released with a holiday collection that I've ever seen. The palettes themselves are just... so bland. I almost feel like they have to actively work to make the curation as bland and boring as it is. And again with the mini Better Than Sex. I declare I never want to buy anything that includes a mini Better Than Sex. 

Face palettes are always big during the holidays....

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Unlocked Palette - $95 - YES!
It's so expensive... and yet every time I look at this palette I get grabby hands. Now, to be clear, my saying YES! to this has nothing to do with it being a good value. In fact, I'm pretty sure that when you compare the cost per gram of this to one of their regular full sized products, it's a pretty shitty value... And yet.... I WANT IT. I love my Ambient Lighting palettes from previous years - I own the original Ambient Lighting Palette and the Ambient Blush Palette - and I feel like I would love this one just as much. Also, the fact that there are no repeats in this palette of what I already have doesn't hurt either. So yes, it's expensive... but it's still a YES from me. 

Smashbox Holidaze Contour & Spotlight Highlighting Palette - $49 - YAWN!
There's nothing inherently wrong with this palette. I mean, it does appear to be gigantic with a lot of wasted space on the inside, so there's that, but otherwise the shades look pretty nice and I do think the snowflake designs in the pans are really pretty. I think I'm just really over contour and highlight palettes. On top of the fact that most of us already own at least one contouring palette, you also know that you're never going to use all of the shades. I don't know, maybe I'm just jaded. I don't hate this one like others coughPineapplecough! but it just bores me.

Cheek palettes have historically been a favorite of mine...

Clinique Get Cheeky Holiday Palette - $39 - YES!
Yes, please. Yes yes yes. Not only do I absolutely love the Clinique Cheek Pop blushes, but I don't own any of these three gorgeous, wearable shades and I love the idea of having them all in an easy compact. It's also a really phenomenal value, considering that you get three full sized Cheek Pop Blushes, which retail for $29CAD each, for only $39! Do I really need more blushes? No, probably not. But this is almost certainly going to be coming home with me this year. And by this year, I mean probably this weekend....

Tarte Life Of The Party Clay Blush Palette & Clutch - $56 - YAWN!
After last year's Tarte Blush Bazaar Amazonian Clay Blush Palette, this blush clutch just feels... underwhelming. The shades feel limited and lack excitement for me and I just really don't like the packaging at all. If you're new to Tarte blushes, this might be something that excites you, and for the size of the pans you are getting a good value for the price, I just... can't muster any excitement about this palette at all. 

Too Faced Sugar Peach Wet & Dry Face & Eye Palette - $52 - YES!
If you ask me why this palette excites me while the Tarte one isn't doing anything for me... I honestly couldn't really tell you. Maybe it's because of the peach aspect or the fact that this is being marketed as being more versatile. Maybe it's just because this is super cute. I don't know, but I do know that I'm really smitten with this palette and would like to have it in my collection. Is this even for holiday? I don't even know. But gimme!

Lip sets have inherent value to me... Especially these ones!

Sephora Favorites Give Me More Lip Set - $82 - YES!
I've skipped out on the Give Me More Lip Sets for the past few years, but there's just something about this one that really gets me. Again, it's quite a spend, but this one has an incredible amount of value for me because there's not only a really good selection of shades and finishes from different brands, but there's also a full size Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick in there, which is one of my absolute favorite formulas. This is one set that I'd really, really love to have!

BITE Sweet Treats Agave Lip Care Set = $15 - YES!
Of all of the sets in this list, I feel like this is the one that's most likely to end up a part of gifts for people on my shopping list. The BITE Agave Lip Treatment is a killer product and I feel like this 5ml size lasts for an impressive enough time that this is a great value at $15, especially if it's something that you've been wanting to try but haven't because the full size can seem expensive for this type of product. 

Too Faced The Sweet Smell of Christmas Mini Melted Liquid Lipstick Set - $32 - YES!
This set, for me, gets it done because I both love the formula of the Too Faced Melted Matte lipsticks, but I also really love the curation of this set and feel like I would get use out of all four shades included in it. That's where the value in these types of sets falls for me, because I rarely go through a lip product and I like having a lot of variety in my collection, so a set of minis - particularly one that contains all shades that I like - is very much worth it. 

Sephora Collection Midnight Kisses Storybook #LIPSTORIES Set - $38 - YES!
These are full sized lipsticks! Initially, I thought they were minis and was a little bit startled by the price, but upon closer inspection I realized that they were full sized and realized what a good value this is. I think I would definitely wear five out of the six shades and I love that they really included a variety of shades and finishes in this set. Like I said... there's value in the variety. 

And now for... two of the same thing, except for one is good and the other... well...

Sephora Favorites Superstars - $90 - YES! (left) & Sephora Favorites Superstars - $96 - WHAT? (right)
When I first saw these two sets on the Sephora website, I genuinely thought that the one on the right must be old because... Well, when I look at the products I genuinely feel like this is a dated set of products that doesn't feel like top Sephora products in 2018. The set on the left, however, contains products that really have stood out recently and have that wow factor to them. According to the Sephora website, the $90 set has a value of $172 while the $96 set has a value of $246, but I feel like that doesn't really tell the whole story. The products in the $96 feel dated, while the products in the $90 set feel more current and exciting. Obviously this is just a matter of taste, but does anyone else look at these two sets and feel like one of them makes a hell of a lot more sense than the other? Maybe it's just me.

Anyway, I'd absolutely love to get my hands on the $90 Superstars kit, while I really have no interest in the $96 one. I'm just really, really confused as to why there are two of them... and why one of them feels so boring.

Finally, I wanted to end with some mini sets...

BECCA Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed Highlighter Mini Macaron Set - $48 - YES!
This is definitely, definitely a set that has me tempted. I actually down own any Becca highlighters because admittedly they've always felt a little too intense for my personal taste, but I've always wanted basically them all and I love the idea of not having to choose just one and having a selection - all of which I know I would get use out of - in pan sizes that don't feel overwhelming and unusable for someone who uses such a light touch when it comes to highlighter.

Sephora Favorites Glow For It Set - $34 - YAWN!
This set is just... so unappealing to me, I have to say. I feel like the inclusive of High Beam, which these days feels just completely irrelevant is just weird, first of all. Second of all, I feel like most people prefer their highlighter to be a pressed powder, so a set that contains 4 creams/liquids and a loose powder highlighter doesn't really feel like the most appealing thing in the world. Obviously this one is just about taste but just... nah.

BITE Beauty Four Little Bites Amuse Bouche Lipstick Set - $29 - YES!
While I won't personally be picking this set up this year because I actually already own three of the shades, I almost always pick up one of the mini sets from BITE at the holidays. I think they're a phenomenal value and they're always really well curated with a lot of wearable shade variety and I think this year is no different. Also, the quality of the BITE Amuse Bouche lipsticks is just incredible, so I would highly recommend this set if you're into it.

Benefit Confection Cuties Set - $25 - YAWN!
Honestly, guys, I am super over the mini sets that Benefit puts out every year. While, yes, they are always really cute, I just can't get into the product selection and the fact that they never, ever do anything different. Like... I literally have these exact sizes of these three products in my collection currently that I didn't have to pay for, so as cute as the packaging is it seems pretty silly to me to pick up this set. I guess if someone has been wanting to try out these products, this is a good way, but it's just super boring to me and I have no interest.

So there you go! I feel like there's an overarching theme here. I really feel like holiday sets should be special. For me, special means that they stand out from the norm, whether it's because of a really great design or a lot of value for your money, and they also need to really usable, both as far as the quality of the product as well as the shade selection. Obviously, some of that is going to come down to taste and there's probably a good number of people who are excited about the things that I find just overwhelmingly boring, but at the end of the day I do kind of wish that brands would go back to putting out holiday releases that I could be more widely excited about.

I'd love to hear in the comments what's on your holiday shopping list so far this year!

Thanks for reading!

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